I had a TravelZoo voucher for this restaurant – it was a great value for a fancy date night. I paid $69 for $128 value – 1 shared appetizer worth up to $20, 2 entrees worth up to $45 each, and 1 shared dessert.
We were seated in a smaller room to the right of the entrance way. It was quite nice, with lots of windows and light, and a fireplace off to the side. The host tried seating us in a corner, squished between a wall and a table of 4 loud people so we (after years) have learned our lesson and Jay spoke up and asked for a different table. Once were were settled off to the side and not pressed against other people we were much happier.
We were served an amuse bouche to start. I didn’t take a photo, although I really should have. It was a simple chopped Greek salad served on a porcelain spoon. It was honestly the most disappointing amuse bouche I’ve ever had. Jay enjoyed it, because it did taste like Greek salad, but I can and do, regularly make Greek salad at home. It’s nothing fancy, nothing interesting, and in my mind, not worthy of being an amuse bouche even if the cucumber is chopped up into tiny little cubes. The amuse bouche was also served right before our appetizer was served; there was a timing issue at the start – the amuse bouche, bread & butter and appetizer all piled up together at our table. Sure it was fast, but awkward. The bread and butter was tasty – it was warm and there were both white and olive bread to choose from. The butter was seasoned with garlic and herbs and we used the bread to wipe up the rest of the tartare.
For the shared appetizer we chose the tartare – Canadian Rangeland Farm Elk Tartare with horseradish cream, cured yolk, sun choke chips for $18. It was very mustardy but good – a tad chunky with little sweet hints throughout. It was definitely different than beef tartar. We really liked the light horseradish cream on top and the sun choke chips were a nice crispy way to get the tartare into our hungry mouths!
For Jay’s entree he chose the Sungold Farm Lamb Sirloin with roasted beets, yukon gold fondant, leeks, brussels sprouts, black garlic, mushroom ragout ($40). This was probably the BEST lamb we’e ever had. It was not really strong like some of the New Zealand lamb can be. It was cooked perfectly, very tender, and tasted delicious. The dish was seasoned well and the mushrooms added a great hint of earth.
I ordered the Certified Angus Beef© Tenderloin with potato pavé, swiss chard, carrot purée, foie gras butter, cauliflower and bacon gratin, and veal demi-glace ($45). The steak was simple, but seasoned well. It was super tender and cooked perfectly. There were a lot of veggies on the plate and the cauliflower was really good. The super thinly sliced potatoes were super crispy and delicious. This dish hit the spot!
For dessert we shared the Raspberry and Vanilla creme brûlée. It had a great crust on it with just a hint of raspberry. The dessert was served with just 1 blackberry, a handful of blueberries (one of which was shrivelled), a couple pieces of strawberries and a tasty chocolate dipped biscotti.
Overall this was an enjoyable evening at a beautiful venue. The Bow Valley Ranche is definitely a special place for a special occassion.